Believe it or not, most people that I talk to or work with have no intelligent, pre-planned strategy for wellness in their lives when it comes to eating. This is one of the first key concepts that I focus on in my executive wellness coaching. I use the term “wellness” quite a bit on my website and in my articles, particularly as it relates to nutrition. Diet is just that important for our health and wellness.
Here’s a life rule that we’d all do well to master –
Choose your food (and eat) as though your wellness depended on it, BECAUSE IT DOES!
Tip #3 – Eat for Wellness
It’s interesting. People often seek me out for help and guidance to resolve a host of problems that they encounter in life, other than for nutrition purposes. Some of these other reasons are: relationship issues, emotional issues, depression, anxiety, work/life balance, budgeting, spiritual insight, etc. All of these, at first glance, are seemingly unrelated to eating, diet or nutrition – at least that’s what most people with these types of problems seem to think. And it’s true, these types of issues don’t necessarily stem from poor nutrition. However, it is my belief that WHAT WE EAT directly influences how we cope or deal with our problems. Let me explain.
How Poor Nutrition can complicate life problems and crisis
Essentially it has to do with balance, but that’s much broader a topic than I wish to cover here. What we need to focus on (for the purposes of this topic) is the fact that many of us use food as a coping mechanism for our tough issues and problems. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that emotional eating is not good, particularly due to the fact that emotional eating usually involves making very poor nutritional choices. Now I don’t claim to be an authority on emotional eating, but I do know, from personal experience and from working with my clients who want to lose weight, that many times humans use food (and other substances) as a quick fix when feeling bad, depressed, angry, or upset. The interesting thing is that emotional eating does work, but only temporarily. The downside to this type of eating is that it sets off an addictive cycle that only compounds our true problems.
Think about it – not only does this type of person have a difficult issue (unrelated to eating) to deal with, but also he/she is setting himself up for a host of health problems as well. Here’s an example.
John is under pressure at work from his boss to meet his sale’s quota by year’s end. To make matters worse, John has been underperforming over the last several months due to relationship issues at home with his wife. He finds himself feeling stressed out, tired, overwhelmed and sick most of the time. Instead of coping in a healthy way (to balance out his stress), he skips breakfast, drinks too much coffee, eats fast food for lunch, snacks from a vending machine during office hours, and eats popcorn, cookies and Coke every night on the sofa before a long night of trouble sleeping.
In the above example, John just wants to feel better now, but gives no thought as to the “food” and substances that he’s putting into his system. Not only does he have serious work and relational issues to deal with, but his poor dietary choices are compounding the issue by setting up a chemical imbalance in his body. Unchecked, this will cause him poor health and more suffering in the future. Here’s why. John’s unconscious coping strategy will most immediately lead to mental fogginess, weight gain, depression, mood swings, anxiety, high blood sugar, fatigue, insomnia, etc. Do you think that any of these will help him solve his problems? Furthermore, if he continues down this road (over a prolonged period of time), he will face even more serious issues, such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer or even worse. Talk about a life of regret.
Can you see how a bad diet will only complicate life’s difficulties? I could give tons of other examples, but I think my point is clear.
Being slack about our diet will lead to regret later in life
Here’s one point about eating well that many of us seem to overlook –
We are what we eat.
Profound, huh? I know. We hear it all the time. Many of us even say it a lot, but never take its truth to heart, so let me try to elaborate a bit more to make it more clear –
Every single thing you put in your mouth and swallow today BECOMES YOU tomorrow.
That’s right. All of the junk food, candy, cookies, sodas, alcohol, drugs, tobacco, etc. that you put in your mouth today will become part of your heart tissue, blood, brain cells, lungs, bone, kidneys, liver, skin, hair, etc. tomorrow. Eating a prolonged or permanent bad diet is like building a house with cheap or bad materials. It may look good at first, but it will not stand the test of time. The same holds true of your body when filling it with crap. Today it tastes great and seems to do the job. Tomorrow it may very well turn against you and cause you a world of sickness and regret.
Fortunately, we do have free will and the ability to make wise choices that will hopefully reward us with good health, happiness and promote longevity. Of course, there are no guarantees, but there IS a lot of science and research to back up the fact that HEALTHY EATING PROMOTES WELLNESS.
Clean, Healthy Organic Eating Promotes Longevity and Peace of Mind
Choosing to eat healthy is a standard we all should adopt for our lives. I chose to do this years ago, more out of necessity than pure choice. I spent many days racked with the fear and agony of anxiety, headaches, weight fluctuation and fatigue. I sought advice from doctors only to be prescribed addictive medications that I refused to take, once I discovered the harm they could do to me, in addition to “relieving” my symptoms. Through lots of trial and error, research and study, I discovered a foundational key to wellness that has revolutionized my life –
Clean, Organic Eating.
That’s not to say that choosing to eat organic whenever possible will solve all of my problems. But, at least I have added peace of mind – knowing that I’m eating the best way to nourish my body and have optimum health. I take comfort in this fact. And, in addition to this, eating a healthy, well-balanced, clean and organic diet promotes longevity, a healthy body, a healthy mind, stamina, clear thinking, less stress, and simply a better physical and mental disposition overall. What better way could there be to balance out or counter the problems that we face on a daily basis?
One of the last things I want is to bring bad health or sickness upon myself, due to dietary neglect. In other words, I don’t ever want to be guilty of making myself sick or overweight because of poor dietary choices. No, I have chosen to practice wellness now through proper nutrition to avoid bringing sickness upon myself.
What about you?
Have you made the conscious decision to practice wellness by eating in such a way that promotes good health and longevity? What kind of food are you putting into your body? How many meals a week do you eat fast food? Do you feel bad a lot? Are you overweight? Maybe it’s time to wise up before you regret this practice of bad eating.
Quick Ways to Clean Up Your Diet
If you’re like most people, you may not know a whole lot about eating well. That’s okay, there’s no time like the present. Here are some things you can do now to start cleaning things up and improve your nutrition:
- Learn to read the ingredients label of what you’re eating. If you don’t know what something is on the label, you probably shouldn’t be eating it.
- A long shelf-life means a short life for you. The faster a food spoils, the better it is for you. Good, real food spoils fast.
- Fermented foods are your friends. They contain lots of healthy bacteria that will boost your immune system and digestion.
- Stay away from white foods. Processed foods, no matter how pretty the package, will not help you in any way.
- Drink lots of clean, filtered water. It’s the elixir of life.
- If you eat meat, buy grass-fed as much as possible. It contains CLA, a known cancer killing compound.
- Eat as though you were living in the 1800s or earlier. They ate real food back then, not all of this fake stuff that we have today.
- Check out your local farmer’s market. Rest assured, what you’ll find there is much better quality than anything you’ll find at the grocery store.
- Eat organic whenever possible. Doing so will minimize the amount of environmental chemicals, pesticides and preservatives that you intake on a daily basis.
- Avoid as much sugar as possible. If you have a sweet tooth, then stick to things like honey, real maple or brown rice syrup, stevia, organic succanat or the like.
If you put the above tips into practice in your own life, you’ll increase you wellness exponentially. This is not something to procrastinate. Not eating well for life will most assuredly lead to regret.
As always, feel free to leave comments. And if you need a coach to help you avoid regret by eating for wellness, feel free to contact me here.